EppsNet Archive: Luck

Bad Luck

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as “bad luck.” — Robert Heinlein View image | gettyimages.com Read more →

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

The notion that we have limited access to the workings of our minds is difficult to accept because, naturally, it is alien to our experience but it is true: You know far less about yourself than you feel you do.   A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth.   It is the consistency of information that matters for a good story, not its completeness. Indeed, you will often find that knowing little makes it easier to fit everything you know into a coherent pattern.   The exaggerated faith in small samples is only one example of a more general illusion — we pay more attention to the content of messages than to information about their reliability, and as a result end up with a view of the world around us that is simpler and more coherent than… Read more →

The Hedgehog and the Fox

Hedgehogs “know one big thing” and have a theory about the world: they account for particular events within a coherent framework, bristle with impatience toward those who don’t see things their way, and are confident in their forecasts. They are also especially reluctant to admit error. For hedgehogs, a failed prediction is almost always “off only on timing” or “very nearly right.” They are opinionated and clear, which is exactly what television producers love to see on programs. Two hedgehogs on different sides of an issue, each attacking the idiotic ideas of the adversary, make for a good show. Foxes, by contrast, are complex thinkers. They don’t believe that one big thing drives the march of history . . . Instead the foxes recognize that reality emerges from the interactions of many different agents and forces, including blind luck, often producing large and unpredictable outcomes. . . . They are… Read more →

Forget mistakes, forget failures, forget everything, except what you’re going to do now and do it. Today is your lucky day. — Will Durant

Some Links

Success takes luck: how to increase serendipity in your life The Top UX Trends of 2013 How to Stop Overthinking Everything: 9 Simple Habits 12 Tools for More Mindful Living Recruiting Advice No One Tells You Be Thankful for a “Do-Nothing” Boss Read more →

Pug Meetup

There was a pug meetup at the Irvine dog park today. Here’s a picture of me with some of my pug friends. The funny thing is we didn’t even know there was a pug meetup. We just showed up and there it was! It’s a lucky day for me! I’m going to buy a lotto ticket LOL! Read more →

I Would Like to Do First-Class Work

I have to get you to drop modesty and say to yourself, “Yes, I would like to do first-class work.” Our society frowns on people who set out to do really good work. You’re not supposed to; luck is supposed to descend on you and you do great things by chance. Well, that’s a kind of dumb thing to say. I say, why shouldn’t you set out to do something significant. You don’t have to tell other people, but shouldn’t you say to yourself, “Yes, I would like to do something significant.” — Richard Hamming Read more →

Why People Don’t Succeed

In summary, I claim that some of the reasons why so many people who have greatness within their grasp don’t succeed are: they don’t work on important problems, they don’t become emotionally involved, they don’t try and change what is difficult to some other situation which is easily done but is still important, and they keep giving themselves alibis why they don’t. They keep saying that it is a matter of luck. — Richard Hamming Read more →

Bad is Good

I saw a guy I used to work with on LinkedIn today . . . The thing I remember most about him is that he believed it was bad luck to wish good fortune on someone. For example, if you said to him “Have a good day,” he believed that would in fact cause him to have a bad day. When I worked with him, if I saw him as I was leaving the office, I’d say “Have a crummy evening.” And he’d say, “Thank you.” Read more →